ERC bats for expanded presence in Visayas, Mindanao

by Lenie Lectura – December 9, 2015

from Business Mirror

THE Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) on Wednesday announced the creation of an ad hoc oversight committee that will oversee preparations for the reorganization of its Visayas and Mindanao field offices.

ERC Chairman Jose Vicente Salazar said the move is in line with its proposal for Structural Strengthening that will be submitted to the President.

Salazar said the planned reorganization of the agency’s Visayas and Mindanao field offices “aims for a more empowered operation that will bring about more effective service to that part of our country.”

“This is consistent with the principles of devolution and decentralization being pursued by the government,” Salazar said.

“The move is also a response to the aspiration expressed by the Committee on Energy of the House of Representatives for the ERC to bring itself closer to the people by empowering our Visayas and Mindanao field offices,” Salazar added.

He said there has been a longstanding call from the House of Representatives for the ERC’s expanded presence in the said areas. Such presence, Salazar said, is expected to help the regulatory processes become more efficient and effective.

“We envision these field offices to become area offices with structures patterned after that of the head office,” he added.

Salazar also announced the appointment of ERC Director Noel Salvanera as head of the ad hoc oversight committee. Prior to his appointment to the committee, Salvanera was acting head of ERC Legal Service.

Salazar said Salvanera’s “technical skills, organizational competence, extensive experience in the agency and his institutional knowledge makes him the most qualified official for the position.”

Salvanera will perform inspection and monitoring functions. He is also expected to provide the commission with inputs and advice on policies and practices for the development of the Viyas and Mindanao field offices.

Salazar said Salvanera will head the committee for a period of one year.

The ERC also designated Prescia Vanessa A.Reynante and Dianara B. Capito as members of the ad hoc committee.

Chief Energy Regulation Officer Alfred Vergara Jr. has been designated officer in charge of the Legal Service. Supervising Energy Regulation Officer Ronaldo G. Gomez and Attorney IV Grace Lu-Santos were, likewise, designated as Legal Service division heads.